Can I do Hijama if I have a Skin Condition?
Hijama can be performed on the majority of skin types but there can be places to avoid such as areas where there are varicose veins, scars or areas of extreme eczema and open wounds.
Apart from these different places to avoid cupping on the skin there are many variations of skin that will affect how we deal with the technique of making incisions in order to be able to perform cupping effectively and without causing harm.
Below I’m going to talk about the different types of skin that I have encountered in my 8 plus years experience of doing hijama and how to deal with it.
Thick skin vs thin skin.
Human skin comes in different thicknesses varying over different areas of the body. As you go further down the body you will find that the thickness of the skin increases slightly.
This means that you may have to be more firm when making incisions. You can still use the same technique for incisions but you may have to stretch the skin a little bit as this will help you to penetrate the skin easier.
For example the kin on the hands and feet is thicker. the lower parts of the arms and legs are also thicker than the upper parts. The skin on the back is the easiest place to cut and is the best place to do hijama for a variety of reasons which I will talk about in another post Insha Allah.
Palms of Hands and Soles of Feet
Cupping on the palm of the hands and the soles of the feet is exceptionally difficult. The skin on these areas are so thick even for those who don’t have the extra callouses and hardened skin that comes with getting older and doing hard physical work.
For this reason I avoid cupping on these areas completely. If I want to cup the feet then I do the top of the feet as its much easier and also very beneficial.
If you have a client that wants cupping on the palm of the hands or the soles of the feet you could try but first make sure that they are aware that you will have to do much deeper incisions in order to be able to penetrate the skin to be able to draw blood.
You may also need to use some honey to help the cup actually stay attached to those areas. Even though they don’t have hair the thickness of the skin and the grooves that are in it can mean that air will easily get into the cup especially if the client moves their hand or feet after putting it on. Top of the feet more preferable to me because of this reason.
Rough skin vs smooth skin
Rough skin can be tricky because it may be very easy to make the incisions even though you may think the opposite because it is rough. Skin that is rough may not necessarily be thick or strong. It can sometimes be very delicate which means that it will cut easily.
Take special care on clients that have acne or skin conditions such as psoriasis as their skin is already highly sensitive. If you are confident in making incisions and you know that you made good incisions but then don’t see any blood it is best to try another area if possible.
Try to avoid repeating incisions in the same area in the same treatment as you may cause extra irritation to the skin without realising.
Stretch marks and scars.
I would avoid making incisions on any scar of the body in general. When it comes to stretch marks it make sense to be careful to avoid extra sensitive areas (check with your client what those are) and avoid any excessively lumpy areas of stretch marks.
Dark skin Vs lighter skin.
In my experience in doing hijama I have found that on lighter skinned people the actually marks of the incision can clear up very quickly and fade fast compared to darker skin.
With darker skin even though the incisions have healed the marks from where they were made can remain for months compared to people with lighter skin which is usually only a month or less for the incision marks to completely disappear.
I think this is mainly because the colour of healed skin for lighter people is closer to their skin colour. Whereas with darker skin the healed wound can be considerably darker or considerably lighter than the actual skin colour and then can take a long time until it evens out.
If the incision marks have not cleared you can still do hijama without any problem as long as the skin has completely healed and isn’t broken.